Just after midnight, a 7.5 earthquake struck the top of the South Island of New Zealand. We felt the shake in Christchurch, but it was not as bad as the 2010 quake that wrecked the city. The shaking went on for more than two minutes, and seemed like it would never stop. But there was not serious damage in Christchurch.
The quake was centred further north in an area that is less intensely populated and has no high-rise buildings. I imagine that is why there have only been two fatalities. The worst affected towns were Hamner Springs and Kaikoura. Both are tourist towns. Hamner is famous for hot pools, mountains and skiing.
Kaikoura is popular for whale watching. The picturesque highway that travels down the coast through Kaikoura has been closed by dozens of slips. Many tourists spending the night there in their campervans are stranded, while they wait for the road to be opened again. The area is still being rocked by serious aftershocks.
There is serious damage in the small rural villages like Waiau and Culverden. I am sure there is serious damage on many of the farms too.
Some buildings in the capital city Wellington have been damaged, but this seems to be more superficial.